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May 24th. 3:30PM

Claremont Gymnasium


She had moved her things in, she had a lot of things, but she had paired down to what she would need for the upcoming summer.  And Percival.  Who was essential, and adorable.  The she'd be getting after she found one.  It was awkward.  Hannah got to meet Corinne's folks, and brother.  Who were lovely people, though her brother was exactly the younger 12-year old bro one would imagine him to be.


Once it was all sorted, and her folks were gone after taking both girls out to what was mucho, mucho Thai food, Corinne announced, in their room, she needed to go to the gym and work out, and she invited Hannah along so that she could get some limbering and practice in.  This was of course meaning she was wearing one of the gymnast long sleeved leotards that hid nothing, dark blue with red-orange trim and matching stylized lightning bolt with a lighter blue underscore.  She threw a towel around her shoulders, and a pair of white ankle high Converses before she dragged along the other girl to the Gym.


"I got to loosen up, and so do you.  And don't worry, you've got a better build than I do.  I'm like... seventy maybe ninety-six percent leg, and that causes so many problems, like it took be years to get basic tumbles right.  Pizza, or milkshakes will be our reward!  Or both!"


Of course she had performed an impromptu Gene Kelly-esque routine between the dorms and this building, so how much needed to stretch and limber up may be a bit of a lie.  Still once there, the tall blonde immediately set about working through some basic yoga poses and others, after her shoes were shucked and she was on the mat.

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Hannah was dressed considerably more modestly. Baggy, ill fitting sweat pants and a loose fitting t-shirt. The t-shirt was bought for her, but the pants were not. She had a little bit of softness around her midsection that she was not comfortable with, and kept her tops loose fitting. She was, however, grateful that the hand-me-downs didn't consist of her entire wardrobe. What little athletic ability she had, however, was based on her having decent coordination. She wasn't a klutz on top of everything.


She did the stretches she knew, which were basic and effective. 


"I'd have to do way more working out than I'm used to then." She half-joked

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Corinne was used to this.  As she did it for fun and purpose and all of that.  Admittedly her mom did sort of encourage the physical stuff a lot, and Corinne had always been a tall girl.  Though she hated basketball, well playing it, she didn't mind watching it, and caught a lot of games with Harold as he had the standard LA season passes.


"Probably!  First you gotta learn to just do a front roll, now considering you ate recently though... we woooont start there.  So let's do back falls."  She glided to a pad, and the flopped backwards, slapping arms down as she bent her legs and made she she landed flat to distribute the weight and impact.  Then she pushed herself up to standing.  "You gonna be able to, and no be afraid of, falling."  

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Hannah watched, and managed to repeat it, somewhat. She understood the idea of weight distribution, and impact, and all that. She managed not to hurt herself, though she wondered if she looked stupid She didn't think Corinne would judge her for that. Judging didn't seem her style at all, that was something Hannah was grateful for.


"Like this?" She asked, laying on the floor a moment before getting herself back up. She winced slightly, not from pain, but from general discomfort. Her pants weren't well fitted for this.

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She gave her a thumbs up, "You got it homeskillet.  It's getting it so your body remembers and then you don't have to think about it... It sounds way more daunting than it is."  And then she walked over to her and touched Hannah's hip with one hand and the other touching the opposite shoulder.  "These need to hit at the same side."


While it did bother her to use them, most of the time, the little stuff she figured she was same.  Like... fixing Hannah's pants just a little so that they weren't trying to slide off, and that being self-conscious over that wouldn't be an issue.  As she did that she alternated which hand was on her hip and which was on her shoulder.  She was fairly clinical about it, "Imagine an 'x' across your back that you are wanting all of it to be as flat as possible.  If it help you can start from here..."

She got into what resembled the horse position with her arms tucked, and leaning forward a little, and then she fell back, getting her feet and arms to hit the mat at the same time, then she got to her feet, and went again.  "This is for small falls, and remember to always tuck your chin to your chest when landing back first."

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Hannah nodded, slowly. This was helping. She felt a bit better. She was self-conscious when she felt Corinne adjust her pants, but since Corinne didn't mention it, the moment passed. She fell back, again, and felt good. The distribution of weight meant she didn't feel any pain from the impact. She wondered if being more top heavy than Corinne would affect her ability to do some of the things Corinne was teaching her. She let the thought pass from her head. 


She chuckled. "I'm kinda pudgy, but I'm not totally out of shape." she said. It was true, she was at least average, and proud of it.

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"Once you lean to land like that, then you can lean to land and move... or do more... here like this."  And with that, she jumped and rolled forward, landing on her back.  Then she used her feet to kick off the mat, rolling backwards, and onto her knees.  She was starting simple, not sense in going all out for Hannah, because showing off did little, and it had been a couple months since she had reall been able to do this, so even this was helping for her, though she got from a kneeling to crouching position with a short jump and then she slowly stood.

"Well... okay, actually you're built better than I am for this.  Like the height is totally a problem.  Shorter means lower enter of gravity and easier to rotate on your center axis.  It's why like most Olympic gymnasts are like four ten to five three.  Well except the rhythmic stuff."  She grinned a little bit at her there.

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Robin wasn't really expecting other kids to be in the gym at the moment. After all, the majority of the students went home for the summer, so she had somewhat assumed that the gym would be largely open. Still, she never minded sharing the space, it was huge. She gave Hannah a friendly little wave, including her roommate in the gesture though she only vaguely recognized the other teen. Robin had stripped down to the Claremont unitard uniform as she intended to go through her paces. Riley had been kind enough to help her dye it all dark colors and a bit of judicious use of the home ec rooms equipment had removed the sleeves. Outside of the baggy clothes she wore around campus, Robin's physique was clear gymnast, with a fair share of lighter scars criss crossing her bare, muscled arms. 


"Hey, Hannah," she added, her voice quiet but friendly enough as she crossed over towards where the rolls of tape were and began wrapping her hands in preparation for a proper work out. "Mind if I use some of the equipment? Won't bother you two?"

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Hannah smiled and waved. She was not unwilling to interact with Robin, she had nothing against her. However, Robin's presence was a little disruptive. Hannah stopped trying to fall back, and went back to get a drink from her water bottle. "I don't mind." She said, trying her best to look like she was taking a break because she as thirsty, and not because she was suddenly a hell of a lot more self-conscious. 

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Corinne's response was to set phasers to charming and she enthusiastically waved at Robin.  "Hullo!"  She glanced to Hannah, and saw the shift in her demeanor, and gently jerked her head towards Robin, and speaking softer to her.  "I am gonna talk to her, if she is using the equipment we'll be fine.  Keep practicing the falls.  Okay?"


She turned to trot over to Robin, looking every bit the dancer she was, long legs carrying her over to the newly arrived girl.  "I'm Corinne!  Nice to meet you," she said as she held out a hand to the other girl.  "So, like, we're doing mat work, if you want to do some, let us know and we can move."  All sunshine and smiles, and just genuinely genial.

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Robin glanced up as the other girl crossed over, pausing in tying the bandanna to keep her braids from her face. She offered one hand in return at the gesture, with a firm grip but not overly so although her palms were heavily calloused and her knuckles bore many scars. "Robin," she offered with another of those small smiles. "I can save any mat work until later. I'm mostly here for those." She pointed upwards once she retrieved her hand to the various rings and grips in the gym's ceiling. "Nice to meet you too. I don't think I've seen you around too much."

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Corinne's hands weren't precisely smooth, while clearly not the physical specimen that Robin was, she was assuredly someone who 'worked out'.  Her feet some more of it, with the weird calluses that came with being a dancer.  Her hand shake was firm, and she was clearly an outgoing, confident person.  "No problem!  Just let us know."  Hands were released and she glanced up and nodded a bit.


"Oh, of course!  Erm, I am new, like two weeks or so.  Playing catch-up on coursework.  Powers kinda... ruined that.  You may not see me around much?  Scheduling, and classes, and after school activities."  She made a small face.  She glanced to Hannah and waved her over.  Like gosh, socializing time, then work out time.  "We're gonna get milkshakes, or something after this.  Probably something healthier."  She artfully rolled her eyes and did an impressive shrug, holding her hands up, elbows crooked, palms towards the ceiling.  


Frankly, Corinne was going to take the lack of the 'Oh hey, you're Asad's daughter!' from Robin with grace, and totally not say anything.  "Ooooh, do you know of a place that does like bubble tea or avocado smoothies?"

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The peal of thunder announced the storm that had been threatening all day, and the sound of heavy rainfall landing on the roof of the gymnasium soon followed.  The gym's exterior access opened and in walked one of the schools more popular, if not among the misfits, students.  It was obvious at first glance that the redhead got caught out in the rain, her hair was damp and clinging to her skin and her runners outfit was practically soaked through.


"Well," she said, twisting her lips into a faint smile, "I won't be running this afternoon.  Outside at least."

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"Ouch." Hannah said, sympathetically. "I was going to go outside and read later." She shrugged. "Oh well. Maybe it'll clear up a bit, later." She glanced around the room and realized something. She was, by a long shot, the least pretty and interesting girl in the room. Yet, this didn't bother her. Probably because by some strange twist of fate, Claremont was just full of pretty people. Except, of course, for her. But she'd gotten used to that part. 


She got up and started doing basic stretches. Things she knew she could do without looking stupid or without looking like she had no idea what she was doing. She didn't know what she was doing, but at least with stretches, she could fake it.


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Robin's expression was studiously blank at the question, "I haven't had either of those, I'm sorry I don't have any good advice. I could tell you where to grab good Chinese but its a bit of a trek from here." She offered, blunting the question to the side a bit. "I wouldn't worry about playing catch up, honestly. They're good at dealing with students who might not have had a typical education so getting up to speed on a class or two should be easy enough. Hey, Phae. One of the weather kids making a mess of a summer's day or just weird weather?"


Robin turned to the newcomer with one of her friendly if reserved smiles as she asked the question, "Hannah and Corinne are doing mat work so you should be fine running laps on the outside. I was going to work on bar and ring stuff myself. Oh, have you met Corinne? This is Phae. I'm Robin, by the way, don't think I mentioned my name."

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Okay, so she jumped a little at the peal of thunder, she was not really user to thunderstorms all that much, though not scared, just took her by surprise was all.  "Like, Robin, oh my god, you need to try them.  Just divine!" 


Still, despite her exuberance and flightiness, Corinne caught what Hannah was doing, at this point she got the rhythm of the girl, well the broad strokes at least.  Plus it helped that Hannah was not someone who dissembled a whole lot.


But Corinne didn't need practice, the way she carried herself, and measure of poise and the assured manner she held herself while moving showed that. She was simply needing to move, to do something to fix her stir craziness.  "Well, still, I am in FC for the summer!  And taking classes, I am a semester behind, and... really, I am more than a little busy."


"Yup!  I, like, dragged Hannah out because I wanted to do some mat work, so I figured, time to go over falls."  


Shifting from Robin, she moved to Phae, and extended a hand out to her, all beaming, sunshine and light as that happened.  "Hi, I am Corinne!"



Edited by TheAbsurdist
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"It's okay, I have no idea what bubble tea is, and um, I'm not a big fan of avocados either." Hannah had let herself get dragged over. She was learning that Corinne's dragging was overall good for her. She knew Robin, not especially well, but she knew her. She recognized Phaedra, who was probably one of the prettiest girls she'd ever seen in her life. There really were a shocking number of attractive people at Claremont, she mused. Were there a lot of models with superpowers, or what?

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Phaedra rolled her shoulder in a slight shrug to Robin.


"Not quite used to the weather on this world," she admitted, "But it could be one of the other kids.  Either way I'm soaked and since I was planning on studying with Cathy later..."  She trailed off with a grin, allowing the implication of frozen clothing linger.  The knowledge that Cathy and Phaedra were dating was pretty common knowledge among the student body, and while many of them can assume what goes on between the two sometimes it really is just studying.




"Anyway," Phae continued, making a throwing away gesture and dismissing her earlier comments.  "Hello Corinne", she said grasping the outstretched hand and being careful about squeezing too hard.  "Phaedra Morningstar, but you can call me Phae."

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There reference flew right over Corinne's hear, and she artfully knitted her eyebrows together, as she puzzled over that without saying anything in response.  She had yet to really been exposed, except that Sanderson was bad.  Very, very bad.  Though the hippy dippy Corinne was waiting to meet her before she passed judgement.


She started to say something, about the name or... something, but she closed her mouth, pressing her lips tightly for a moment, and then she nodded.  "Hello Phae."  She knew children of New Agey hipsters with far more... unique names.  And she met a bird person, and when to school with a girl who's name was Rainbow.  So...


"Just here with my roomie, trying to get a little bit of mat work in.  Well.. tumbling."  She shifted a bit, and rather thoughtless adjusted the gymnasts leotard she had on...


"Bubble tea is a-maze-bawls!  It's... like a smoothie, sorta, but it has these tapioca balls in that soak up the flavor, it's great... and avocado smoothies are like vanilla, but soooooo creamy, you gotta try it!"  She leaped from a casual bit of reticence to full bore Corinne-ness, that Hannah gotten accustomed to.  She grasped at Robin's shoulders, and lurched up onto her tippy toes to look into the other girl's eyes as if to impress to upon them that she was speaking gospel regarding foodstuffs.  Tacquerias were her holy land.  She was their proselytizer, their apostle.

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Robin froze as she was grabbed suddenly, the muscles under Corrine's hands rock solid. Thankfully, she'd long ago been trained out of 'hit first, apologize later' so with some effort, she forced her muscles to relax. "I don't eat out much," Robin said mildly, clearly not upset with the girl's effusive nature once she'd reigned in any combat-trained impulses, "But I'm sure someone can give you an idea where to find that sort of thing. Raina might now. Raina usually knows where to find just about anything and if she doesn't, Huang will know."


Robin offered the information easily before she turned towards the soaking wet half-demon. "How's Cathy? I haven't seen much of her lately. Well, I haven't seen much of anyone, honestly." Absently, Robin stretched once or twice before making a quick leap for the rings high above head, and catching the lower ring with one taped hand. "Huang's one of the nicer local kids."

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  • 2 weeks later...

"Cathy is.. just the coolest," Phae said smile, looking a little apologetic at the unintentional pun.  "You really should come hang out more often," Phae said absently pulling at her top and frowning at the wet fabric.  She sighed then glanced back up at Robin, "We've been doing a lot of combat training together lately, Cathy and myself."


She chuckled, "Raina too, if you can believe it.  Though I think she's not all that thrilled by my being there.  She's oddly territorial, an attitude I'd more expect from people at home than here."

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The pun sailed right over Corinne's head, as she looked at her, then she pursed her lips and reached out to Phaedra, and grasped at the air before her and pulled back and as she did the fabric dried as the water snaked away from her in a stream suspended in space.  Hannah knew her roomie as a bit of a space cadet, and she was want to be distracted by odd things at odd times, and now was one of them, it seems was one of those times.  


Corrine's power's terrified her, but sometimes the little things she could do didn't just stop being amazing and distracting.  So the ribbon of rainwater she pulled off of Phae without touching her.  Stepping back she kept the pulling motion, Hannah noticed that Corinne had to gesture a lot with her powers by this point.

Then she spun on one foot, one leg held up, as she whipped the water around her like a ribbon, before she smeared it across the a section of air facing an empty section of the gym, and in doing so turned into a viewing window into a pastel version of what it 'covered' like she had remade the world into water color.  

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hannah was, by this point, used to Corinne's theatrics. She herself had a hard time not gesturing when using her powers. She imagined it was something psychological, something that helped them focus. She didn't have the grace of a dancer, though, that much was certain. Still, it was a neat trick, and Hannah had to imagine Phae was grateful for it. 


"That's gotta be convenient." Hannah said with a smile. "Wonder how long it's supposed to rain today."

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Robin gave a sidelong shrug to Phae, a feat that she managed while dangling from the ring. She watched the power demonstration with the sort of appreciative interest for any display of skill, but also without wide-eyed shock. A year in Claremont had braced her for that sort of casual display of power. Still dangling absently, her fingers curled around the ring and her body held tensed to provide balance so she was in control of the position, she kept up her side of the conversation with only minorly labored breathing. 


"Raina's lost a lot," Robin said simply, "Makes you protective of what you have. Loss is a harsh teacher, 'specially when you're young," Her words were matter of fact and she swung smoothly to the next ring in the series. "Its good to train together, especially with personality clashes. Makes it easier to work with whoever  you run across in the future. S'a good idea."

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  • 2 weeks later...

Corinne was not trying to impress, she could do that without her powers, and since she got Hannah to come out, she didn't want her to feel overshadowed... but... She was... distracted, now, as she started to paint in the air, smearing it about into something impressionistic, though colorful.  Her motions became more and more emphatic, as the telltale ripple started to surge and distort around her.  Space bending, cracking before it just... shattered around her.  Corine hair exploding out into a riotous crown of tresses, as the tall teen turned into something out of a black light, with brilliant neon over dark blues and purples, all stark contrast and jarring against expectations.

She continued her painting, enraptured with what she was doing, making it bigger.  The painting turning into an impressionist, or at least a finger painting take on Freedom City's skyline, at night, saturated with neon.

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